The World Cup’s format is often regarded to be cruel for that one associate nation which is a part of every group. “How would this associate nation beat all the top-ranking teams and qualify to the next stage?”, is one thought that strikes most of us. But we often undermine the path they’ve treaded and the matches they’ve played to reach there. This is one story of such a match- Netherlands VS Ireland T20 WC 2014 Qualifier.
The qualifiers to the T20 World Cup 2014 were pretty straightforward. Only one team among the four from each group would be making it to the clashes with the top-ranked teams. The only way, the table-toppers of Group B, Zimbabwe, would not qualify to the main event of the World Cup was if Netherlands chased Ireland’s total within 14.2 overs.
The field was a paradise for batsmen. And the captain of Netherlands, Peter Borren, noticed the same and so he chose to field upon winning the toss. He knew that chasing was a better idea in such conditions. His plan was simple, restrict the Irish batsmen to as low a score as possible and chase it within 14.2 overs.
And the first part of this plan was a bummer. Making the best out of the Netherland players’ psychological disadvantage, Irish opener, William Porterfield went off to a blazing start, scoring 47 runs in just 32 balls. While the Netherlands’ bowlers did manage to pull things back in the later part of the game, the Irish finished the innings with some brutal hitting featuring Andrew Poynter’s 57 off just 38 balls and Kevin O’Brien’s 42 in only 16 balls. They managed close to 100 runs in the last 7 seven over off the innings. They put up a massive score of 190 for Netherlands to chase.Embed from Getty Images
Given 20 overs, chasing 190 is a difficult task. But given only 14.2 overs to chase with a dream of making it to the main event of the World Cup, the task was impossible. But as a popular sports brand suggests, “Nothing is impossible!”
The asking rate was close to 14 per over, but the situation demanded much more. Netherland’s intent was clear from the first ball of the chase as the captain, Borren, swept the ball for a four. Rest of the over went fine for Ireland as Netherlands could score only five more runs. The second over was when the real carnage began as Stephan Myburgh smashed 4 sixes in spinner McBrine’s over. And there was much more to come from these batsmen. Later on, Myburgh smashed three more consecutive sixes and a four in the 4th over.Embed from Getty Images
This manic partnership came to an end in 6th over when Peter Borren was out for 31 in just 15 balls. He along with Myburgh scored 91 runs in just 36 balls. Two balls later, Myburgh was out scoring 63 in 23 balls. But the power play was finished and now, it became tougher to score.
Few balls later, the new batsman, van Beek was out for only 1 run. Ireland pulled things back wonderfully. The next couple of overs went decently for Ireland and the chances for Netherlands to qualify started becoming thinner. And this time, it was Tom Cooper who scored 4 sixes on the trot.
Only 33 runs were to be scored off 20 balls for Netherlands to qualify now. The 12th over went for 7 runs and 13th over for 13 runs. In the next five balls, there were two sixes and a four, and Netherlands finished the chase in just 13.5 overs.Embed from Getty Images
Yes! Netherlands had chased 190 runs in 13.5 overs. Wesley Barresi scored 40 in 22 while Tom Cooper scored 45 in 15. Netherlands chased down the target of 190 runs in just 13.5 overs, phew! Netherlands VS Ireland was an absolute treat for any cricket fan.
Netherlands did the impossible while the Irish bowlers might be still having nightmares of that day. That was a game to remember!!
Some of the incredible records made that during the match- Netherlands VS Ireland were:
- Highest number of runs in the powerplay overs. Netherlands made 91.
- 27 sixes were scored in this match, 19 of which were scored by Netherlands.
- Netherlands’ 193 for 4 is the highest total a team has made in 13.5 overs in any T20 cricket.
- Stephan Myburgh’s 17-ball fifty equalled the second fastest half-century in T20Is.
- Out of 6 batsman who batted for Netherlands that day, 5 scored with a strike-rate of above 150.
- Tom Cooper of Netherlands scored 45 in 15 balls with a strike rate of 300.
Featured Image:- Ashraful71 / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)
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